So yesterday Sebastian looked at my rowdy coiffure and said, “Um, Mom? I think it’s time you go back to Jamie Lee Curtis hair.”
“What’s the matter, kiddo? Not a fan of the curls? Or do you just miss my pointy hair?” He flapped a hand that could mean anything (therefore: nothing) and didn’t answer.
He’s currently sporting a wacky thatch of his own but has a two-day shoot this week playing a Confederate soldier and his shaggy head is period appropriate. He’s hoping to get a cut next week from costuming since that gig is set present day and he’s playing a frat boy. Seb inherited my tight-fistedness and if he can score not only a free haircut but one he actually gets paid for you know my cheap son is all over that action. Besides getting a gig specific haircut from wardrobe is soothing to him. It’s reassuring to look the part so properly.
Yes, if you haven’t twigged it by now, cameras are rolling again. TWO Covid tests per gig! My kid is dragging his butt to Brooklyn every other day to be swabbed. I’m grateful safety is being taken seriously. Beside the double-negative Covid requirement Sebastian told me masks go back on the second they call “Cut!” At craft service all the foodstuffs are wrapped. The bathrooms have attendants who disinfect between users. And the waiting pen is socially distanced as possible. I am so pleased Sebastian is working on set again! As the quarantine months ticked along and acting seemed further and further out of reach he got quieter and sadder. Unless Q came up. Then there was shouting.
Do any of you remember Sebastian’s friend Mack? Since the fourth grade they were friends. We did our best but a part-time borrowed family can only do so much against chaos at home. Mack’s miserable parents destroyed that kid. After graduation Mack drifted. Bad, bad relationships. Drugs. A short stay at the county stone hotel. Charismatic Christian ‘saving’ that lasted a few weeks. More drugs. Then finally Q. No love (tough or otherwise) could reach him this time. No holy writ except Q and the convoluted fever dreams of the faithful. Seb plead and cried and raged. He read facts and pointed out absurdities. He begged Mack to come home to us. It ended a couple days before Christmas when Mack sadly but also somehow proudly told his lifelong friend he was truly sorry we were going to die. We’d been good to him but the coming conflagration would only spare the righteous. The ones who knew Trump was the warrior sent by God to clean America of its vermin. Q said so.
No idea where Mack is now. Or what he’s doing. Of course I watched the insurrection many times just looking for Mack. Don’t know what I’d do if I had spotted him. Moot point. Mack is gone gone. Sebastian is heartbroken and one horribly painful step forward toward the truth that no matter how much and how hard and how healthy your love is sometimes the demons win anyhow.
A long time ago when I was someone else’s wife and I lived a different life I spoiled a beloved book by rereading it at the wrong time. I picked up that cherished tale when I was sour and cynical and lonely and kinda angry and reading it with that lousy attitude absolutely RUINED it. I could see every contrivance. Every time I’d cried before was simply the author’s manipulation and now that I was seeing it so clearly I was outraged by how clumsy that tear duct massage was. Never was able to read it again with any pleasure. The book was blown. Kaput. It had wrecked itself on the jagged parts of my mind. I vowed to never ruin dear things ever again. At least by reading/watching at the wrong time or with a jaundiced lens.
“Yeah, and? Wait, what are you telling us?”
I’m saying that at the start of the quarantine I put away my best beloveds lest they become attached to this scary odd time and be forever tainted. Not just my best beloveds. Actually I set aside ALL of my constant life companions. Every book. Every song. Every movie. Even some of my clothes. The future had to have those best-est things in it and I couldn’t risk any of them. Perhaps it sounds dopey or even masochistic to go into lockdown without my stuff. Probably it was, but who knew it would be a year? More than a year. I can see I won’t get paroled until summer. Late summer.
(Let’s speak a bit about vaccine distribution. Every state is receiving the same exact amount of doses. Great thinking. You know how many people live in New York State? 19.46 million. You know how many people live in Wyoming? 569, 013. You know how many people live just in my county? 408,944. But by all means vaccinate everyone in Wyoming. Every single one of those gun-toting, anti-science, no mask ‘Mericans! should get vaccinated first! I’ve been in my goddamn house for a year, what’s 6 or 7 months more? *sob of despair*)
Anyway. Without my usual pals I’ve gotten creative about entertainment and my escapes. I never went the sourdough route though I very much appreciate the satisfaction of it. Equal parts science and magic. Plus kneading dough is fabulous. So relaxing.
Kudos to all the creators during this weird year. I was struggling to remember to brush my teeth for most of it. No quilts or victory garden. My house is still full of crap. And I’m okay with that. I’m here. My guys are here. Ivy the cat made it too. Not too shabby. I’m speaking as though the pandemic is over, trust me I know it’s not. All protocols are still in place. However I am a teeny bit hopeful.
Many, many of you understand how stuck one can get when every day is the same. It’s always Blursday and how long have I been wearing this bathrobe anyhow? To see a wee crack in the discouraging blur? A distant but real confirmation this will end? It’s sweeter than the peanut butter M&Ms I’ve been living on.
I’m still waiting to watch ‘Wizard of Oz’ for the 100th time. I was saving it for Election Day and Biden’s win. But when that didn’t spring clear I waited for the Electoral College. And still no joy. Then came the insurrection and like after 9/11 I swung between fury and heartbreak. I sort of got it together in time for my birthday but honestly cannot remember if I managed to get dressed. Now I’m waiting for my shots. Even if the second dose lays me out for a bit the reward for finally being vaccinated will be the centennial ‘WoZ’.
My attention is still too fractured to read much. Mostly I watch YouTube. No. I don’t merely watch it, I inhale it. I open my brain and in floods everything! Then I sieve it through my mind’s baleen. Make a sword from an old camshaft? Sure! BASE jumping from Angel Falls? Okay. 20 minutes of dogs farting and waking themselves up? Absolutely. How-to demos. Histories. Top 10s. Epoxy carving and paint pouring. Dollhouses. Goat herding in Albania. I’m sure you get it. Anything that isn’t too difficult or too long I stuff into my brain like I am fattening it for the kill. Or maybe I’ll go kick serious ass at trivia night when McManus’s starts having it again. If they do.
Let me know if you’re interested in my favorites. I’m happy to drum up some traffic for all the generous souls who post videos and saved my sanity.
Delighted to find some words. Much love, ~LA